Nerlens Noel made six starts in 18 appearances for the Dallas Mavericks prior to their 97-90 loss to the Celtics in Boston. But the 6-foot-10 center’s immediate future currently rests on the sidelines.
Noel will undergo surgery to repair torn ligaments in his thumb according to the NBA’s website. Head coach Rick Carlisle anticipates the injury and rehab process will keep Noel sidelined for “several weeks”.
After signing a one year, $4.1 million contract with Dallas in the offseason, Noel averaged 4 points on 52 percent shooting and 4 rebounds in 12 minutes per game this season.
More recently, the former Sixer averaged 3.3 minutes per game in the Mavs’ previous 10 contests. Noel has struggled to find minutes dating back to early November. Maxi Kleber will continue to earn minutes in Noel’s absence.
Kleber totaled 13 points, 5 rebounds and 5 blocks in a losing effort against the Boston Celtics on Wednesday.
“Kleber’s a good player and he’s done a good job for us since entering the starting lineup,” Carlisle said. “He’s a constant. He’s going to give you hard play on both ends and he plays within himself.”
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